Luca Fiore crowned Gigs Champion 2015

06 September 2015

Hounslow singer Luca Fiore has been crowned Gigs Champion 2015, following a six month search to find London's best busker. The singer, originally from Italy, beat acts from across the capital to take top honours in the Grand Final of Gigs, the UK's biggest street music competition. 

Organised by the Mayor of London, Gigs originally attracted 240 entries, with 190 acts being selected to perform live at 24 busy London locations during the summer, including at the first ever National Busking Day as part of the Busk in London Festival. Today’s final at Westfield Stratford City saw 18 of them, as chosen by music industry insiders and the public, compete in three categories, before the overall winner was decided by the judging panel.

Luca Fiore was initially selected as winner of the Soloists and Duos category (16-25 years), picking up a much coveted year's licence to busk on the London Underground, courtesy of Transport for London. Josh Tenor from Hackney won in the Youth category (11-15 years) and gets a Roland Cube Street amp. Dat Brass from Islington won in the Groups category (up to 8 members) and gets recording time in a top studio.

Other prizes were also up for grabs, including the Eurostar Prize, which was won by Alex James Ellison. He will now have the chance to travel to Paris, busking to passengers on the train and in the French capital.

Simeon Baker from Southwark is the overall winner of the Gigs Songwriting Prize, sponsored by PRS for Music. Cat Burns from Lambeth gets a bespoke package of training and coaching at the Institute of Contemporary Music.

The Mayor of London Boris Johnson said: “Massive congratulations to Luca. Over the summer, our Gigs competitors enlivened some of London’s most iconic locations with their top talent. The standard of the finalists has been extraordinarily high which was showcased at the Grand Final today. Gigs is all about giving stars in the making an opportunity to have their music heard by the masses, and to develop their craft. I’m very proud that many of our competitors have gone on to have marvellous success across the country and internationally. I wish the same great success to Luca and all those who took part in Gigs 2015.”

Gigs 2015 winner, Luca Fiore said: “It is a great honour to be crowned Gigs winner. I have enjoyed every minute of my time busking on London’s streets. This competition has given me an incredible platform to build my confidence and ability to perform in front of large crowds. I’m really thrilled and having the licence to perform on the Underground will be truly invaluable to me.”

Chairman of PRS for Music, Guy Fletcher said: “PRS for Music is delighted to support the Gigs Songwriter Prize.  It is fantastically encouraging for the future of British music that so many competitors are writing their own material. The many high profile performance opportunities that the competition provides gives songwriters an amazing platform to try out their original work.  There is no better way of developing their creative skills than performing to a live and appreciative audience.  Congratulations to all those who took part and we look forward to seeing them go from strength to strength.”

The compere at today's final was top Xfm DJ Phil Clifton. The judging panel comprised: Maggie Crowe, Director of Events & Charities at BPI; Tim Fraser, multi-platinum songwriter and Board Member of BASCA; James Brister, The Hub at ICMP; and Julia Jones, A&R for Gibson Guitars Emerging Talent.

www.london.gov.uk/gigs

 

Notes to editors

  1. CATEGORY FINALISTS IN FULL

Youth category

Judges’ choices:

Public vote:

  • Tali Shear – Barnet

http://buskinlondon.com/entry/tali-shear

 

Soloists and Duos category

Judges’ choices:

Public vote:

Groups category

Judges’ choices:

Public vote:

  • Future Vision – Bromley

http://buskinlondon.com/entry/future-vision

 

  1. The Mayor's Gigs busking competition is an annual event that has become London's biggest free music festival. Open to Londoners aged 11-25, Gigs is a key part of the Mayor's Music Education strategy, which aims to strengthen and promote music education for young people, as well as supporting London's creative industries. Each summer Gigs transforms the capital's busiest, most iconic public spaces into a stage for talented Londoners. Gigs attracts hundreds of applications and is seen by millions of people

  2. Performances this year took place at locations such as St Paul’s Cathedral, Trafalgar Square and Leicester Square Gardens and at special events like the Summer Streets festival on Regent Street and the first ever National Busking Day.

  3. Since 2009 over 1,500 young London musicians have taken part in Gigs and over 175,000 public votes have been cast online. This year some 200 young musicians performed all over London as part of the Gigs 2015 busking competition. Between them they gave over 1,000 performances to over 2.5 million people. Rising stars from earlier competitions include The Tailormade, Harry Houseago, Robbie Boyd, the King's Parade, Charlotte Campbell and James Riley.

  4. For information about Gigs go towww.london.gov.uk/gigs. For details of other initiatives the Mayor is supporting to nurture and support young musicians go to www.london.gov.uk/priorities/arts-culture/access-participation. 

  5. Gigs 2015 Partners:  Network Rail; Westfield Stratford Towns; Westfield; City of London; Eurostar; Institute of Contemporary Music Performance; London Underground; Roland; Regent Street – Summer Streets; PRS for Music; and NUA entertainment.

  6. Phil Clifton is a British television and Sony nominated radio presenter, appearing on MTV (UK and Ireland), Channel 4 and Xfm. He was nominated for the 'Sony Rising Star Award'.

  7. Westfield Presents is an entertainment platform hosting an unmissable schedule of live on-stage performances from emerging and established artists at Westfield London and Westfield Stratford City. A unique programme of live music events will take place every weekend at the two London centres. Showcasing a great range of local music talent and up-and-coming artists to suit everyone - from chilled out afternoon tunes whilst enjoying lunch with friends, to more upbeat tracks on a Saturday evening before hitting the town. www.westfileldpresents.co.uk

 

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